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Why To Kill a Mockingbird has been cancelled at Theatre Royal

PUBLISHED: 10:21 23 January 2019 | UPDATED: 14:51 23 January 2019

Norwich Theatre Royal.
Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Norwich Theatre Royal. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Archant Norfolk 2016

A major UK tour of Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird was due to arrive in the city on March 4 to 9.

The adaptation of novel by Christopher Sergel was set to be staged at theatres across the UK in 2019 following a successful run in London’s Regent Park Theatre.

The show, which tells the story of how racial inequality divides a small town in Alabama, has been cancelled nationwide after a rights clash.

In a statement, Jonathan Church Productions, Curve Theatre, Leicester and Regent’s Park Theatre said they had been contacted by lawyers on behalf of Atticus Limited Liability Company which is behind the Broadway play.

They said that the group, formed by Scott Rudin, had claimed worldwide exclusivity of the professional stage rights.

The statement added the UK tour had “acted in good faith at all times”, but would face legal proceedings if it was not cancelled with immediate effect.

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John Bultitude, communications manager at Norwich Theatre Royal, said: “It is with regret that the forthcoming tour of To Kill A Mockingbird has been cancelled by the producers.

“The decision has not been taken lightly and the producers are truly sorry for the inconvenience the cancellation will cause.

“Our box office will contact all bookers over the next two weeks with more information and arrange a credit or refund on their accounts.”

The Broadway version of To Kill A Mockingbird was adapted for the stage by Aaron Sorkin and opened in New York in December.

The Pulitzer Prize-winning novel follows lawyer Atticus Finch and his brave daughter Scout as they bring hope to a society in crisis.

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